Commonwealth Policy Center
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When former Gov. Matt Bevin pardoned and commuted sentences for hundreds of Kentuckians he created a firestorm. Details of a few cases involving murder and child sexual assault were especially egregious. Now, several Kentucky lawmakers have responded to the pardons by introducing bills that put a check on a governor’s pardon powers. One bill would ensure that crime victims and their families be notified before any perpetrators are pardoned. Another bill would prohibit the governor from issuing any pardons as he leaves office. Attorney General Daniel Cameron has called on the FBI to investigate the pardons and said “While Kentucky’s Constitution gives the Governor the power to pardon a person convicted of a crime, I believe the pardon power should be used sparingly and only after great deliberation with due concern for public safety.”